Monday, October 22, 2012

The Land of Whoo - Ryan O'Brien

Publisher:  Ryan O’Brien
Pages:  226
Source:  I received a copy of this novel from the author for my honest review
Genre:  Middle Grade/Young Adult Fantasy

What parent or teacher doesn’t want to see positive character qualities in their children or students?  As I read this book I immediately thought of the IB (International Baccalaureate) Learner Profiles we teach in my IB school.  We teach them that they should be caring, balanced, risk-takers, reflective, knowledgeable, thinkers, principled, open-minded, inquirers and communicators.  As I read this book I found that it had all of those qualities throughout.

Michael Henry’s adoptive parents have fallen on hard financial times.  Students and adults today could definitely relate to that.  They have to sell their home and move away.  Michael makes a new friend named Savannah.  One night Michael has a dream where he sees a cavern full of portals to other places/worlds. This is where I started thinking about the learner profile.  To act on his dream Michael had to be open minded and an inquirer.  He and Savannah go through a portal into the Land of Whoo.  That screamed risk-taker to me.  Michael learns that his grandfather King Titus is the ruler of the Land of Whoo but is oppressed by the Dark Wizard.  He is the one who killed Michael’s parents.  To help the people of the Land of Whoo he sets out to find a powerful medallion that had belonged to his parents.  It isn’t enough to find the medallion.  It will only work for him if he can pass five different tasks.  One of the conditions is that he can’t show any malice for anyone or anything in the land of Whoo.   He has to be balanced, caring, principled and a communicator to accomplish this.  To accomplish everything he must do he is going to have to become a critical thinker who is reflective of his actions.
Now before you run away because I have brought so much education into this, think about it.  Don’t you want your children to read books that bring those qualities to light?  I do.  It definitely helps that the book is action packed to help carry the reader along on this ride.  The great thing is this is only the first book in this series.  I can’t wait to put it on my shelves at school.

No comments:

Post a Comment